Andhra Pradesh ,which set itself an ambitious tax revenue target for 2015-16, will end the year with a likely shortfall of Rs.6,000 crore. The commercial Tax revenue which comprises maximum chunk of revenue so far mobilised Rs.30,000 crore as against the target of Rs.33,000 crore.
The targeted State's own revenue, tax and non revenue is Rs.49,000 crore but in the overall receipts, including Central taxes, grants and total public debt, estimated at Rs.1.12 lakh crore, the realisation could be about Rs.1.01 lakh crore. In the public debt, while State hoped to raise Rs. 22,475 crore during this fiscal, it may not be able to raise beyond Rs.16,600 crore before March-end.
Among other key revenue-earning departments, the Stamps and Registration revenue is set to cross the targeted Rs .3,500 crore by about Rs. 200 crore and the estimated excise revenue of Rs.11,000 crore may fall short by Rs.200 crore.
The Commercial Taxes revenue last year was Rs. 25,000 crore and the CT, Stamps and Registration and Excise together registered 20 per cent growth and earned Rs.7,000 crore more than that of last year. “By any cost, it is a decent growth though the targeted revenue not likely to be realised,” they said.
The Excise Department could have earned more if the government took a decision on expansion of distilleries to meet the increasing demand of liquor. Telangana was quick to approve expansion of distilleries in tune with the growing demand. Had the AP government allowed new distilleries or their expansion, the excise revenue could have gone up by another Rs.1,000 crore to Rs.2,000 crore. To meet the shortfall, the State has been importing liquor from the neighbouring States and their revenues have gone up, thanks to the import bill of Andhra Pradesh.
Instead of squeezing the departments like Commercial Taxes causing unnecessary strain, the government should have tapped other resources which could have easily brought down the shortfall. The release of pending amount of Rs.679 crore Central Sales Tax compensation in lieu of reducing the CST from four per cent to two per cent, came in handy for the State during this financial year. It is yet to release Rs .2,000-crore CST compensation dues.
However delay of revenue deficit grant of Rs.13,000 crore was more worrisome even after the CAG had certified the deficit for the year 2014-15. “ We are hoping that part of the amount will be released before the month-end,” the sources said.